CAMPAIGNERS in Watchet are stepping up their efforts to save their library from closure after cuts in Government spending.

At a full parish council meeting on Monday, councils discussed the next move in the campaign to save Watchet's library.

The town's library is one of a number in the county facing closure unless volunteers step forward to run it by September.

Parish Cllr Peter Murphy, a representative of Friends of Somerset Libraries, said: “We are looking at setting up a community group in Watchet, which will provisionally be called Friends of Watchet Library.

“We'll aim to keep the library funded by Somerset County Council.”

Libraries' campaigner Tim Coates has been speaking to the group about ways of making savings while keeping libraries open.

The former managing director of Waterstone's and WHSmith, is an advisor to the House of Commons select committee on culture and has spent the last twelve years advocating improvements to the public library service.

He said: “There is no doubt they could save money by following the principles - restructuring staff and rethinking distribution and procurement.”

He recommended reducing costs on backroom services and improving the front-line with more new books, longer hours and smarter premises.

Cllr Peter Murphy added: “By reorganising the library we believe the county council can still make the savings without losing this vital public service.”

A meeting to discuss setting up a Friends of Watchet Libraries group is scheduled for April 8.